Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Not New Music

This 1971 release is essentially a jam session that sprang out of the Tago Mago sessions and then pressed on to vinyl and since forgotten. While it is hard to single out any of Can's early 70's work as being superior to the other, it's easy to argue that Tago Mago is one of the best. The 36 minute track Auf der Einbahnstrasse is split in to two LP side lengths. Obviously this doesn't have the polished sound of similar works but what it lacks in calculated chaos in makes up for by keeping things funky and loose. Maybe not the first place to go if you are new to the Can cannon but definitely a worthy brother to their classic oeuvre. Not much else to say about this one just grab it.

Here are some movies that came out this week on DVD that you should check out.

netflix instastream

One of my favorite movies to come out last year was Andrew Bujaski's follow up to his math rock mumble core dramedy Mutual Appreciation. If you have not seen Appreciation or his debut Funny Ha Ha you might have heard his name thrown about when the genre tag "mumble core" is brought up. I hate the term, but yes the characters do have a tendency to mumble. It's not because they are unintelligent or have nothing to say it is because they just don't know how to get it out. Often times when they do manage to get a word in that foot lands firmly in their mouth. This movie was shot around the Austin area where director Andrew Bujlaski now calls home. Warning: If you are a 20/30 something hipster lost in this modern world you might find yourself cringing at some of the honest emotions on display here. I get the same feeling watching Bujalski's work that I bet Bozo gets when watching Fellini's Clowns.

Icons of Suspense: Hammer Films

While you may not recognize the name Hammer Films you may have seen some of their movies that adorned video rental shelves since the inception of the cult movie section. England's Hammer Films were the masters of taking stock monster movie characters and archetypes and infusing the extra chills that post war audiences were looking for. What their films lacked in budget they made up for with innovative design choices and classy British actors like Christopher Lee. This set collects six of the studios non-monster horrors, none of which I have seen but given the rest of their output I bet they are nail biters. If you are new to Hammer Films might I also suggest you check out Kiss of the Vampire (1963) or the Curse of Frankenstein (1957).

The Italian Straw Hat (Un chapeau de paille d'Italie)

Saw an unrestored version of this at a silent film festival a few years ago and am glad to see it finally available on DVD. A guy is on his way to get married when his horse eats a lady's hat which sets off a series of silly events involving the questioning of social mores and airs. This may seem like the set up for a superfluous comedy of manners but director Rene Clair's background as one of the grandfathers of French surrealist cinema brings an interesting style and social critique to this other wise lighthearted affair. It is has also been said that this movie influenced Luis Bunuel and Salvador Dali to create their surrealist farce L'Age D'or.


netflix instastream

I have seen some fucked up shit take place in movies in my time, but there are three isolated scenes in this movie that stand at the top of those images. This episodic Hungarian family drama traces three generations of a family and their bizarre and repulsive eccentricities. This is a very black comedy that recalls some of the more hilarious elements of David Lynch's work. Perverted, disgusting and beautifully photographed all at the same time.

Youssou N'Dour: I Bring What I Love
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A look into the music and faith of Senegalese pop star Youssou N'Dour.


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